Legionnaires’ disease confirmed at Manteno Veterans’ Home

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MANTENO, Ill. — Officials confirmed at least one case of Legionnaire’s disease at a downstate veterans’ home.

The Manteno Veterans Home can care for as many as 294 skilled care and special needs vets according to its website. The 122-acre facility opened in 1986 and is comprised of five major nursing care units.

A family member of a veteran contacted WGN after hearing from officials that someone living there tested positive for Legionnaires’ disease.

Soon after, the veterans’ home issued a press release advising the public of the developments. In it, the director of the facility said he immediately issued directives to notify residents and next of kin and that the water is being tested, efforts to eliminate the threat and vital sign checks will be increased.

Tuesday’s news follows that of a Legionnaires’

outbreak in Quincy where 14 residents died from the disease and dozens more got sick in recent years.

The issue became a major political issue in the governor’s race where then incumbent Bruce Rauner was put on the defensive over the slow response to inform the public and how his administration handled the matter.

Rauner directed millions of dollars in improvements there and, in a PR move to minimize damage, even stayed at Quincy a short time.

Still, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan opened a criminal investigation.

Stephen Curda, IDVA director issued the following statement:

“We are taking every precaution necessary to protect our residents, staff, and visitors at our Manteno Home.”

WGN has reached out to incoming Gov. J.B. Pritzker and his administration for a comment, but has not heard back.


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